Archive for October, 2006

5:15 pm: I hang cute ghost earrings from my ears, turn on the porch light and fling open the door. Let the fun commence.

5:20 pm: I live halfway up a hill, three quarters the way to the cul de sac. My house is the only one on the hill with the international “we have candy” symbols of open doors and burning porch lights. I almost feel like going to the mouth of the street with a sign that says Not Worth Your Time.

5:35 pm: I start calling my dog “Case-per the friendly ghost” in an effort to have some Halloween cheer.

5:40 pm: I decide that my dog may be the only trick or treater I see all year. I give him a miniature peanut butter cup from the treat basket. Hey. Don’t judge. He’s a really big dog, and there’s hardly any chocolate on the thing.

5:41 pm: Dog begins vigil by the table holding the treat basket. I begin folding laundry. At least SOME good will come of this waiting.

5:45 pm: Laundry is folded. (I love dark loads. Few socks, lots of pairs of blue jeans.) Dog still holding PBC vigil in earnest.

5:46 pm: My street is as dark as Kleinheider’s heart. Seriously, in about six weeks that guy’s gonna strap antlers to his little dog’s head and go after all our presents.

5:47 pm: This is the boringest live blog ever. Dog still holding vigil. And I ate one of the 100 grand bars. That’s 90 calories I won’t get back.

6:02 pm: I look like a tool reading immigration blogs while wearing a Winnie The Pooh T-shirt and ghost earrings. I think the dog is going to come downstairs and eat me if I don’t give him another miniature peanut butter cup.

6:07 pm: THREE TRICK OR TREATERS! Healthy young lads dressed as skeletons. Or something. I didn’t get a good look at them because the dogs took it as their solemn duty to guard me from the dangers of short people with plastic sacks. I gave each brave lad two candy bars as a reward for having climbed the Hill Of No Hope and being barked at by Two Angry Yet Useless dogs.

6:11 pm: I’m about to give up. Where are the flocks of human young that I remember from my childhood Halloweens? Don’t people get how social this evening is? How much of a custom we’re losing to fear? They say the terrorists did it, but I think part of it we’ve done to ourselves. We’ve scared our kids with urban legends about razor blades and brown acid hidden among innocuous gifts of candy. So now instead of the hail-fellow-well-met of Halloweens past we’ve got this Trunk Or Treat nonsense.

I think I’m a little too morose.

6:20 pm: Ahhhh. That’s better. Fresh new meat. Apparently the entire neighbourhood’s worth of children decided to T&T in a pack of jovial princesses, pirates, Titans fans and Harry Potters. I’ve given away half the candy and I have restored my faith in humanity.

6:30 pm: There’s been a steady trickle of children, which does my heart glad. As well as my waistline. Being stuck in a house all week with Nestle Crunch Caramel bars would have been disastrous. In between innocent children I’m arguing with Kleinheider about I.Q. in the military. It’s kind of like having my brother (the poopy monkeyhead) around.

6:49 pm: I’m ready to give up. I want my soup and toast. I’m tired of hearing the dogs bark. I’m so fickle.

7:03 pm: I think I’m done. No body has come by for 15 minutes. My soup is calling me. Seriously, the golden butternut squash soup is totally restuaurant-worthy. And it’s perfect for Halloween.

7:05 pm: After yammering about the Grinch and terrorists and soup I realised that I totally forgot to write the long poignant piece about my dad’s birthday. Part of it was forgetfulness–part of it was realising that I’ve got a bit of a cold and that really cramps my writing style. My dad’s birthday is right now. Happy Birthday, Dad.

9:34 pm: Postscript.
My dad got 68% off his meal at the local Mexican restaurant. Three guesses why. I enjoyed my soup and toast. We had no more trick or treaters after 7:00, bringing our grand total to around 20 or so. 20. Is that even enough for a softball team? I think no small part of me is a bit p.o.’d. I’m an adult, and it’s my turn to show off my house and be the nice neighbour with the good candy. Thanks for robbing me of that, you selfish Trunk Or Treating kids!!!!

Oh, and if I’m up all night it’s because I’m worried about Joe Dubin’s neighbour’s dog.

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Claudia Nunez screwed up. She came here from El Salvador on a six-month visa, which she then overstayed by four and a half years.

Claudia Nunez screwed up again. She was driving without a license and received a ticket. Like most people who are essentially well-intentioned, she went to pay the ticket. She was promptly jailed for immigration violations, and stands to be deported to El Salvador. Because of current conditions in El Salvador, this amounts to a death sentence much in the vein of Pontius Pilate.

Claudia Nunez will leave behind three legal U.S. residents–her husband and two daughters.

I was supposed to meet Ms. Nunez last night, but was unable to. I understand that Mack is attempting to arrange another meeting with Mrs. Nunez and her attorney for those who are interested.

I do have some questions about Mrs. Nunez’ immigrant status, namely why she allowed it to reach this point. I also must go on record as stating that I don’t think it is fair for some immigrants to go through all the hoops to be here, while others who fail to follow the required red tape expect amnesty without penalty. If I had my way, immigrants such as Mrs. Nunez would be allowed to stay in the country, but they would have to follow the same red tape as other immigrants. They would also have to pay a fine, similar to IRS penalties levied for late payment of taxes. I believe in three things: Justice, mercy and consequences. That type of solution seems to be the most equitable outcome for all concerned. It allows a woman who has made her life here to keep that life, while at the same time acknowledging that she has violated what is essentially a civil, not criminal, law.

Some other writer once said
[Mercy] is enthroned in the hearts of kings,
It is an attribute to God himself;
And earthly power doth then show likest God’s
When mercy seasons justice.

Mercy would allow Mrs. Nunez to be a mother to her children.

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Target rocks. Not only do they have a lighted Sea Lion for your lawn that looks like my dog (Light-up Lawn Quinn! $39.99!!!), but this year they’ve done us Christmas Lights junkies a major service.

They’ve got a display of every type of light they sell, handily lit for you to prejudge your lights. It makes it so handy to pick which style you want. Better still, it makes the whole seasonal section really festive! Yes, Target truly does rock.

this message brought to you by fans of target. it is in no way paid for or endorsed by Target/Dayton-Hudson Corp.

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You people are clogging up my library.

I realise that many of you think of the Hermitage Branch Library as a place on your way to Target and Kroger, nothing more. I realise that you think it’s no big deal to fill THE ENTIRE PARKING LOT with your cars. I get that you’re cool with lining up to choose from this year’s paltry offerings.

But the library is my sanctuary. It’s where I go to be among the books. If I were really fond of strangers I’d be hanging out at a bar or a Kroger.

Next vote let’s save a few parking spaces close to the building for library patrons only, and let’s NOT feel free to stand in the hallway on the way to the polls and talk loudly about politics.

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Chic, The Dave Clark Five, Grandmaster Flash and the Furious Five, R.E.M., The Ronettes, Patti Smith, The Stooges, Joe Tex and Van Halen.

What’s wrong with that list?

Who’s missing?

That’s right! You left off this man.

Rock and Roll has a few dark poets–Waits, Morrison–worthy of the Hall, but none of them can hold a candle to Zevon. I can understand how you may think a guy with one top ten hit doesn’t rate, but there are few who made music that speaks as loudly.

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I’ve had a houseful of guests this weekend, and more fun than I had even hoped. We celebrated Halloween together–details in tomorrow’s post.

Until then, in the grand tradition of Network Television, I’m replaying last year’s Halloween Episode for your enjoyment.

Partly because I’m half lazy, half tired. And partly because what I said then is still pretty much how I feel about it now.

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Women bloggers, you are wanted, needed and desired!

We are having our second Breasted Blogger Bunco night, here at Casa du Kat, on Friday.

I’ll have dinner starting at 5:30, and we start rolling at 7:00.

Please come. It’s fun.

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In light of the ongoing Frank Fracas Du Jour (and you’re welcome for the hits, Terry), I need to say something.

If we are Christians I firmly believe that our FIRST duty is to the cross of Christ. Jesus’ last recorded words on this planet were recorded in Acts 1:8

But you will receive power when the Holy Spirit comes on you; and you will be my witnesses in Jerusalem, and in all Judea and Samaria, and to the ends of the earth.”

Church, where are you going? And what good are your actions? Are you first and formost being His witnesses to the ends of this earth?

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This time I’m calling her a bigot and I’m not apologising.

Because she’s written a post that reaches through the internet and slaps me square in the face.

The fullness of marriage is not achieved with the swapping of rings and the symbolic kiss, but rather when the union results in the bearing of a child. … I don’t believe that marriages must produce a child to be a marriage–but its ability to is its very essence.

Listen here, Terry.

I’ve got about the most perfectly “Christian” marriage you could find. A preacher’s kid and a woman who was born again at 4, baptised at 10, both of whom have half the Bible memorised. We are active in our church and I think that even the non-Christians who know us would gladly step in and tell you that we are Christian people doing our best to live as Christ would have us live.

We are a man and a woman. We took communion at our wedding. We vowed to have a Christ-centered marriage. We’re pretty darn perfect as far as your criteria go.

Except for the children. We haven’t had any. Not through any choice of our own, of course, but through the working of the very God in whom I believe and you purport to believe. Surgeries and drugs and pain and tears have led us to this place where we accept that God allows crack addicts and wayward highschoolers a blessing He chooses to withhold from us. I spent a lot of years saying “Father, let this cup pass from me” and am now saying “okay fine, your will be done.”

But, lady, I am as married as married gets. WE ARE A FAMILY. The very Bible in which I believe and you purport to believe says that marriage is a model for Christ and the Church. (It’s all over Ephesians, which is in the New Testament, which is in the back half, in case you’re not sure where to find it.) Man is to love his wife enough to die for her. Woman is to love her husband totally and serve him gladly in partnership. It serves as a microcosmic model of Christ’s sacrificial relationship with mankind. Nowhere in Ephesians or the Gospels or any other back-half books does God say that a marriage requires children to be a marriage. Children are a blessing but not a necessity.

How dare you, in your crusade to propell a religious institution into the realm of the State, do you then look at my marriage, which is the very essence of that religious institution and call it “not valid”! How dare you decide that you and you alone have got the world figured out.

I hope you quake in shame in front of God at that day when you have to account for your behaviour. I hope on that great day our God looks at you and says “why did you think you were good enough to do my job for me?” And I hope you have enough time to come up with one doozy of an answer.

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Brittney has a peeve. And I happen to think she’s right, because it’s one of my peeves too.

Too often food writers use the phrase “tuck into” to mean eat.

I am a hypocrite because I object to the fey use of Britishisms. And I’m the one who still spells like I work for The Daily Mail. Yes, I love the extra spark that those extraneous “u”s add to colour and favour. And I like the softer look of an “s” in places where Americans will typically put a “z”. Prioritise vs. Prioritize. Which one looks more polite? I ask you.

But it stops there.

Unfortunately, I move in a world where a bunch of people are Harry Potter fans, and so they try very hard to talk as if they’ve grown up on that side of the ocean. And it makes me want to beat them severely. You don’t tuck into a meal. You don’t ring people on your mow-bye-all. When something is unusually remarkable it is “cool” or “awesome” or “fantastic”. It is not “brilliant.” If you are sick and require extensive treatment, you place an article in your claim. In other words, we take you to THE hospital, not just “hospital”. When you are talking about a friend and you reference his sister you say “he has a sister named Cindy.” You do not say “he has a sister called Cindy.” Those things on your feet are either sneakers or tennis shoes. They are not trainers. You are either wearing a sweater or a sweatshirt, not a jumper. A torch is a flaming piece of wood, not a flashlight.

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